Lying on the ground among the leaves and snow, its pungent evergreen smell approaches the steps of our house. Once decorated with glistening ornaments, wrapped in bright lights, our Christmas tree brings memories of the celebration of the birth of Jesus just over six weeks ago. The decorations are packed away, gifts put to use, and cookies or candies all eaten. But has the Christ in Christmas already been forgotten among the daily grind of life?
After the “first Christmas” when Jesus the Son of God was born, that amazing historical event soon became memories to those who experienced it. And what amazing memories! A long trip to Bethlehem for Mary and Joseph to register for a census, then the virgin birth of Jesus, the Savior of the world – his bed an animal trough, the appearing of an angel announcing the birth to shepherds joined with a heavenly hosts saying, “Glory to God in the Highest” and finally the shepherds finding Mary and Joseph with baby Jesus. There was great rejoicing!
Celebrating all that had happened, “Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen” (Luke 2:19-20). Their hearts were filled with joy as they returned to their homes.
The shepherds continued their daily work tending and caring for sheep. Returning to Nazareth with their new baby, named Jesus, Mary and Joseph continued their daily work as well. Joseph continued his business as a carpenter – creating, and building. Mary busily took care of Jesus – feeding, cleaning, and raising him. They went back to daily life but they took with them the Son of God.
Now in the year 2016 six weeks after the Christmas tree is gone and celebrations have ceased, do we return to our daily lives “glorifying and praising God”? Do we acknowledge Jesus the Savior of the world in our work, our homes, in our everyday happenings? Do we talk with Jesus, thanking him and asking him for his strength, his peace, his direction every day? Or have we already forgotten him as we move onto other events and holidays?
God gave the world a gift that never goes out of season, his Son Jesus who would be called “Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace”. (Isaiah 9:6) Whether shepherds, carpenters, business people, mothers, fathers, singles, widows, orphans or whatever our role in life we can go to Jesus for counsel, experience his mighty power and loving arms as a father and know His peace in all circumstances.
Don’t forget to include Jesus in your daily activities. If you are a believer in Him, Jesus is there in your presence today. He hasn’t forgotten you. He is the Vine, our life source. In fact, the Christmas celebration never ends when we take Jesus with us into our daily lives “glorifying and praising God”.